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Quiz Clinic! 200 Level Courses

Hi,

Welcome to the quiz clinic. Here we receive questions from students offering Mass Communication courses with a view to providing research-based answers.

What are those questions that bother you presently in any course? Make sure the question is meaningfully written so as to get the best response. You may or may not mention the course.

Regards.

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The Author

Chinenye Nwabueze

He is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Mass Communication, Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University, COOU, (formerly Anambra State University), Igbariam Campus.

32 Comments

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  1. Sir ,got a question on Public Relations .
    How can we effectively measure PR?

    1. How Do We Measure Public Relations?
      Public relations is a management function that primary deals with maintenance of a favourable relationship between an organization and its publics. This function could be achieved through an in-house PR unit or by engaging the services of a PR agency. No matter which one is involved, PR goals are achieved through specific campaign programmes targeted at the publics. Organizations that pay for services of PR people want to be sure that they are not wasting money. This means that they always want to know whether the PR programmes and actions they are funding actually have the expected positive effect on their organization. This is why PR programmes are evaluated after implementation. The process of evaluating PR programmes to know whether they were effective or not and the extent of effect they had is what we refer to when we say we want to measure PR.
      First of all what do we measure in PR?
      We measure public relations campaign plans and objectives. To measure PR simply means to evaluate PR efforts, campaign, programmes and objectives. But when you hear “how do we measure PR” it sounds strange to you. No need to be confused. It simply means how do I effectively evaluate the PR efforts I have made.
      You need to have clear PR objectives so that you can have what to effectively measure. If you have meaningful objectives you can measure whether they were effective or not. If for instance, before setting out on a PR campaign one of your objectives could be to improve organizational image/patronage through sponsorship of campus programmes. After sponsoring programmes done by University students on specific campus such as students’ week, cultural day, seminars and exhibitions, you then evaluate or measure the outcome of these activities. That is what it means when we say we want to measure PR. It means we want to know whether the public relations activities we did were effective, that is, whether they had the expected effect on our company or our business, depending on the objective.
      Why do we measure PR programmes, objectives and campaigns?
      We measure PR to ascertain whether the campaign objectives were achieved. Organisations always want to know whether the money they are spending on public relations is worth it. They want to be sure they are not wasting money. They want to know the most cost-effective PR campaign so as to drop the cost-ineffective ones. A cost effective PR campaign programme is the one that money spent on it is worthwhile; that is, after spending the money you see the value on the organisation’s activities, not the one that you finish spending money and nothing tangible happens in terms of positive image to the organization or business patronage. So we measure PR to confirm that your PR efforts, the PR campaigns you spent money on are effective strategies; you measure PR to find out errors you made in planning or packaging the campaign in order to correct such in future campaigns; you measure PR to plan for the future; that is, how do I do a better campaign in future in order to eliminate confusion in campaign programme implementation, waste of fund and wrong planning?
      So how do we measure PR?
      In another way this question is asking “how do we evaluate Public Relations activities, campaign objectives?”
      Several authors have listed ways of effectively evaluating PR. But one thing you should bear in mind is that the basic way to measure PR is through research. That is why we say that every PR campaign begins and ends with research. So to measure PR you engage in fact-finding mission to find out whether the efforts you made, whether those campaign activities were effective in creating a good impression of your organization. You cannot really tie PR to product sales because there are other factors that affect product purchase. But you can use any of the research techniques to find out whether your PR efforts brought people to point of purchase, or made them have a positive impression of your organization’s products. Still using our example, after sponsoring campus activities (sponsorship is our PR campaign programme) you have to ask questions on the impression of students about your company or products. You can use survey research method to do this. You can even do a content analysis of social media platforms to know what is now said about your company. You are checking the outcome of your PR campaign to know whether it succeeded, whether there are errors to correct in future, or whether you even used the wrong PR programme. So you evaluate your PR effort over time through effective monitoring of the outcome using any of the research techniques you know. You are now trying to answer specific questions: has awareness been created? Do people now have positive impression of our organization? What is media coverage of our organization like? Has negative attitude about of people towards our brand transformed to positive attitude? Has the effect of the damaging information planted in the media against us been neutralized? What you are measuring depends on the objective of the PR campaign you did. Use any research or data gathering technique to do this – survey, content analysis, in-depth interview, Focus Group Discussion, observation method, among others.
      For additional information, you can look these links below for specific ways you can measure PR;

      1.https://www.walkersands.com/Does-Pr-Work-7-Ways-To-Measure-Its-Imp

      2.http://www.axiapr.com/blog/how-to-measure-public-relation
      3.https://www.theideabrand.com/happenings/blog/insights/5-ways-to-measure-public-relation
      4. https://www.prmention.com/blog/10-methods-to-measure-the-impact-of-pr-campai

  2. Sir! my question comes from foundation of communication research… the question is

    various classes and ways of classifying research abound.. sir! please discuss those classes and ways with relevant examples….

  3. Sir! my question comes from foundation of communication research…

    the question goes like this…

    1. various classes and ways of classifying research abound. Sir! please discuss those classes and ways with relevant examples..

    1. Research is a fact-finding process aimed at providing answers to puzzling questions. Mass communication research therefore refers to systematic, organized process of finding answers to puzzling questions in mass communication. The basic research techniques for carrying out studies in mass communication apply to all disciplines in behavioural sciences. So let’s briefly see how research is generally classified.
      Before embarking on research you need to be specific on the type of fact-finding approach you would use to accomplish your task. This is the essence of classifying research.

      1. Well, you can classify research by purpose, by intended use, by time dimension of the research, that is, how long will it take to carry out the research or what is the time factor in this research, then by method. But some scholars combine but purpose and intended use together. This is because they are related.
        Classification by purpose means what is the basic reason why you are carrying out the research?
        Classification by intended use means research can be classified based on what you want to use it for. Though this is related to purpose, some scholars single it out for discussion.
        Classification by time dimension means how long will it take to do this research or what is the time factor in this research? Is it short term or long term (longitudinal) study?
        Classification by method means how will you carry out the research? How will you obtain data from the field and do your analysis, among others.

        1. Examples
          Purpose: If you’re classifying based on purpose, you have exploratory research, explanatory research, descriptive research;
          Intended Use of Research: If you’re classifying according to intended use you have basic research and applied research. Note that this is often discussed under purpose of research. But some scholars separate purpose and intended use as different sub-headings.
          Time Dimension of research: If you’re classifying in terms of time dimension of the study, you have cross-sectional research, and longitudinal research
          Method: If you’re classifying in terms of method you have quantitative and qualitative research. Under quantitative research you have experimental research, survey research and content analysis research. Under qualitative research you have In-depth Interview, Focus Group discussion, observation method, and qualitative content analysis.
          These are some examples of how research is classified, whether it is research in mass communication or other behavioural studies. You can get more details by clicking this link here>
          http://www.zeepedia.com/read.php?classification_of_research_goals_of_exploratory_research_research_methods&b=71

  4. pls sir I want to know more on the approaches to critical Review Writing . The psychological approach, biographical approach, deconstructionist approach, mythological approach and Gender approach.

    1. Approaches to critical review writing are the perspectives or angles you can use in reviewing a work. They are referred to as lenses use to critically review a work. There are various approaches to critical reviewing. You said you would like to know more about psychological, biographical, deconstructionist, mythological, and gender approaches.

      1. The psychological approach recognises that there are individual differences and people could produce works based on these differences. It says a person’s feeling, attitude, or disposition towards an issue, a class of people or anything could influence their works on that issue or thing. A person’s general disposition, attitude, behaviour or even mental state of mind could influence his works. For example, an Igbo man who witnessed the Biafra war could have a different disposition while writing a book on that war, from someone of the Hausa tribe who witnessed events during that war from the other side of the divide. Psychological approach is saying you should do a little bit of research on the background of the author of a work before delving into the review. Your findings on the author’s disposition could be pretty useful in understanding the perspective of his work in order to do an objective review.

        1. The biographical approach consists of evaluation of works based on an understanding of the life of the author. It is related to the psychological approach but while this looks at the life and biographical data of the author, the psychological approach specifically dwells on disposition and behavioural traits. The biographical approach is asking you to find out how the author grew up, or the environmental context which possibly influenced the work.

          1. The deconstructionist approach recognises that the language or words used by the author could have a different expression from the actual meaning. The author could use specific words or possibly slang words to appeal to the audience. You need to understand those words and their meanings in order to do an objective review. You don’t judge the work based on the original meaning of the words. This approach is saying that words could symbolise meanings different from the actual meanings generally known. This approach is saying that the language used may not actually represent reality but how the language is used is what matters. Someone could be writing on rape of democracy; here rape is used to represent high injustice in a democratic setting. So words could symbolise different meanings.

          2. Mythological approach is saying that myths and symbols are common to various cultures therefore while reviewing a literary work you should understand the common myths reflected in the work in order to do an objective review.
            Gender approach basically talks about how sexual identity could influence people’s works or how the audience interpret a work. It primarily deals with reviewing a work from the perspective of how a specific gender is treated in that work. You don’t look at the work from a general point of checking its aesthetic value but from how the work, for instance, discussed women or treated them in specific scenes or chapters. A typical example is the song entitled “To Be A Man” by Nigerian artiste “Flavour”. Some critics argue that the work was not fair on women because it kept praising men and creating impression that they alone take care of the family ignoring the contributions of women to family upkeep.

  5. Ezeifeka Emmanuella

    Good afternoon sir. Please I’d like to know the differences between hypothesis and generalization

    1. First of all let us look at the two concepts;
      Generalisation is relating what you found in smaller groups or samples to a lager population. It is when you make broad inferences from findings on a smaller sample or specific observations. Most times, you carry out a study on a small group so you can generalise the result to a larger group. That is why the selection of sample size should be representative of the entire population so that you can generalise the results to a larger group. Generalisation is backed up by empirical evidence. For instance, let us assume you are doing a study on the influence of social media on Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University (COOU) students’ academic performance.

      1. If your sample size is 400 for instance, and you ensured that the selected sample is representative of the entire population, when you finish the study you can generalise the findings, that is, relate it to the entire students of COOU. If for instance, you found that exposure to social media negatively affects students’ academic performance, based on the 400 students you studied, you can generalise the result to the entire students of the university. It then means students of chukwuemeka odumegwu ojukwu university do not do well in class because of excessive use of social media. That is what generalisation means in primary terms.

        1. Hypothesis on the other hand, refers to a statement of proposition that does not have empirical evidence yet. (When you here empirical evidence it means information, data or facts you got from observation, that is, information from research you carried out on a particular issue).
          Hypothesis is a tentative statement which you intend to confirm or test during your study. You are saying that something is possibly like this but you have to confirm first before you can make it a statement of fact. It is a supposition you intend to confirm by testing it in a study. It could be true or false, that is why it is called a tentative statement. You are simply predicting that something is like this or like that but you cannot rely on it until it is tested. So it is just a proposed explanation of a situation or a phenomenon. You basically have the Null and Alternative hypothesis.

  6. One is saying that yes this is like this, the other one is saying no it is not like that. When you now carryout the research and test the hypothesis you will now know whether the statement is true or false, that is, whether to accept the alternative hypothesis (which means the statement is true) or the null hypothesis (which means the statement you proposed is false). Hypothesis is often used to test the relationship between to variables.
    Example: Let us use our initial example on students of COOU and social media to give example of hypothesis. We are studying the influence of social media on academic performance of COOU students. The Null hypothesis will say “There is no significant relationship between exposure to social media and academic performance of COOU students” while the alternative hypothesis will say “There is a significant relationship between exposure to social media and academic performance of COOU students.” The Null hypothesis is represented with the symbol “Ho” while the alternative hypothesis is represented with the symbol “H1”.

    1. Now let’s go straight to your question. The basic difference between the two terms – generalisation and hypothesis – is that you generalise what you have facts to back up but hypothesis is still at tentative level or unconfirmed state, so you can’t generalise it. What you are generalising has already been confirmed in a study on smaller units or sample. There is empirical evidence to support what you want to generalise. But the hypothesis is not yet a fact so you can’t relate it to a larger population until you have tested it. You only generalise hypothesis after you have tested it.

      1. Ezeifeka Emmanuella

        Thank you sir.

  7. Good Evening Sir!

    Sir! please my question is…..

    conceptualize the term Research pointing out and explaining in details the key word in defining research?

  8. OBI OGECHI EMMANUELLA

    Good morning sir, My question goes like this ( under Comparative media system)
    1. What do you understand by the term ” The Now Media”
    2. Compare the reporter in United state of American and that other reporter in Soviet Union.

    1. What do we understand by “The Now Media?”
      The concept of the Now Media is used to refer to the broadcast media. Radio and television particularly are known as the now media because they emphasize immediacy. The broadcast media report events as they happen; they carry breaking news, report live events and bring you into the scene of an event as it is happening. That is why they are called the immediacy media or the Now Media.

      1. But you need to understand that technology has expanded the range of media we can refer to as the now media. Remember that the broadcast media were first referred to as the Now media while differentiating them with the print media. Before now, the print media such as newspapers and magazines did not report events while they happened. These media published the story the next day or after a week depending on the frequency of publication.
        But today technology has redefined mass media channels. It is no longer only radio and television that report events while they are happening. Any channel that has online platform is also the Now Media because with the online platform you can break news as it is happening. Today, the social media, and other online newspapers, magazines, and news platforms are all part of the Now Media. Why?

        1. If anything happens now, you will find it in the online edition of Punch, Thisday, Daily Sun, Nation, or Vanguard. Don’t forget that these are all traditional print media in Nigeria which were initially not able to break news while it happened. They could only report what happened today the next day, except for even newspapers which report a story that happened in the morning some hours later in the evening. Today, every serious newspaper has an online platform and they all break news. Newspapers now carry breaking news online. They even report events live as they happen. They also have audio/visual content. So the Now Media landscape has expanded to include all electronic media and electronic editions of print media. You should note this while responding to this question. The broadcast media were first called the now media because the sense of immediacy influenced news coverage, from what is reported to how it is reported, including the language used in reporting it (the tenses, verbs and presentation style). Check various online news platforms today, the sense of immediacy is also reflected everywhere.

    2. To your second question;
      Compare the reporter in United States of America with that other reporter in Soviet Union;

      The basic difference between the reporter in the United States and the one in Soviet Union is ideological environment within which they work which influenced their operations. Whereas the USA operates a liberal capitalist society, the Soviet Union operated a conservative socialist society. The journalist in the USA was free to do his job, report on both government and the opposition without fear of being molested or even killed, after all, government was not paying his or her salary. But in the Soviet Union, the reporter was trained to protect the interest of government and in fact worked for government because almost all officially recognised media houses were owned by the government.
      Whereas the US journalist had freedom of expression the Soviet journalist did not enjoy that freedom. Again, the Soviet journalist was trained to support a communist ideology, the US journalist was trained in an atmosphere of capitalism, true democracy and freedom of expression. The Soviet journalist feared for his life because he was working in an environment of dictatorship. He couldn’t talk at all against the government.

      1. The basic difference between the US and Soviet Union journalist is that one enjoyed freedom of expression, the other did not; one was trained in an environment of dictatorship and had to give one-sided report in favour of government but the other was free to report the two sides – government and opposition views – making journalism an exciting profession in his country; one had a communist ideology while the other had a capitalist, democratic ideologies; one worked for government because the media organisations in his country were all owned by the government but the other did not work for government because the media organisations in his country were and still are owned by private individuals or organizations.

        1. But you must note that this was during the cold war. After the disintegration of the Soviet Union in December 1991, these perceptions of journalists in the US and former Soviet country began to change gradually. This was because most of the 15 countries that came out of the Soviet Union started transiting to democracy with more liberal environment for journalists, or so it looked. The change may not be rapid and very noticeable but the journalists in those countries that were in Soviet Union have started adopting a more liberal ideology and free-press perception. This is because most of the countries now practice democracy and are not under Russia again. Recall that Russia was the capital of the Soviet Union and those other countries bowed to Russia.

          1. Today, democracy or what looks like it has overtaken most of the countries that were in Soviet Union. They now work in a relatively free environment. Government no longer owns all media organisations. Individuals and private organisations now own some of the news media so the landscape has changed and the journalists have also started practicing real watchdog journalism.
            You must note that this freedom is not total as there is still palpable fear among journalists working in Russia and neighbouring countries such as Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Belarus, Uzbekistan and Moldova. Though Russia is said to be transiting into true democracy, President Vladimir Putin has done little to strengthen democratic institutions so it is not yet party time for free-press journalism in that country. Some of these countries that came out of the Soviet Union are still suffering from the hangover of dictatorship within which they existed for years. The total change to free-press journalism may take some time before becoming realistic.

  9. Thank you sir, indeed, am grateful.

  10. Thank you sir, indeed, am grateful.

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